Quotes about governance

A collection of quotes on the topic of governance.

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Terry Pratchett photo
Kamisese Mara photo

„It is with obedience to your call that I take up the burden of government leadership for the final time.“

—  Kamisese Mara President of Fiji 1920 - 2004

(Letter to President Ratu Sir Penaia Ganilau, 5 December 1987).

Ernesto Che Guevara photo

„The government of the United States is not the champion of freedom“

—  Ernesto Che Guevara Argentine Marxist revolutionary 1928 - 1967

Address to the United Nations (1964)
Context: Those who kill their own children and discriminate daily against them because of the color of their skin; those who let the murderers of blacks remain free, protecting them, and furthermore punishing the black population because they demand their legitimate rights as free men — how can those who do this consider themselves guardians of freedom? The government of the United States is not the champion of freedom, but rather the perpetrator of exploitation and oppression against the peoples of the world and against a large part of its own population.

Daniel Goleman photo
Aga Khan IV photo
Omar Mukhtar photo

„I never submitted to the Italian government: I only had conversations with it.“

—  Omar Mukhtar Libyan resistance leader 1858 - 1931

Trial proceedings (15 September 1931)

Janusz Korwin-Mikke photo
Voltairine de Cleyre photo
Martti Ahtisaari photo

„Since I know that about a million people have been killed by the government of Iraq, I do not need much those weapons of mass destruction.“

—  Martti Ahtisaari Finnish politician and former President of Finland 1937

Defending the US government decision to invade Iraq, as quoted in "Nobel Finn" in Wall Street Journal (11 October 2008) http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122367870922824537.html?mod=googlenews_wsj

Johnny Depp photo

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Recep Tayyip Erdoğan photo
Maximilien Robespierre photo
Louis Antoine de Saint-Just photo

„It has always seemed to me that the social order was implicit in the very nature of things, and required nothing more from the human spirit than care in arranging the various elements; that a people could be governed without being made thralls or libertines or victims thereby; that man was born for peace and liberty, and became miserable and cruel only through the action of insidious and oppressive laws. And I believe therefore that if man be given laws which harmonize with the dictates of nature and of his heart he will cease to be unhappy and corrupt.“

—  Louis Antoine de Saint-Just military and political leader 1767 - 1794

J’ai pensé que l’ordre social était dans la nature même des choses, et n’empruntait de l’esprit humain que le soin d’en mettre à leur place les éléments divers; qu’un peuple pouvait être gouverné sans être assujetti, sans être licencieux, et sans être opprimé; que l’homme naissait pour la paix et pour la liberté, et n’était malheureux et corrompu que par les lois insidieuses de la domination. Alors j’imaginai que si l’on donnait à l’homme des lois selon la nature et son cœur, il cesserait d’être malheureux et corrompu.
Discours sur la Constitution à donner à la France http://www.royet.org/nea1789-1794/archives/discours/stjust_constitution_24_04_93.htm, speech to the National Convention (April 24, 1793).

Louis Antoine de Saint-Just photo
Richard Ramirez photo
Stephen Hawking photo
Dadabhai Naoroji photo
Terence McKenna photo

„Progress of human civilization in the area of defining human freedom is not made from the top down. No king, no parliament, no government ever extended to the people more rights than the people insisted upon.“

—  Terence McKenna American ethnobotanist 1946 - 2000

"True Hallucinations" (1993)
Variant: Progress of human civilization in the area of defining human freedom is not made from the top down. No king, no parliament, no government ever extended to the people more rights than the people insisted upon.
Context: Progress of human civilization in the area of defining human freedom is not made from the top down. No king, no parliament, no government ever extended to the people more rights than the people insisted upon. And I think we've come to a place with this psychedelic issue. And we have the gay community as a model, and all the other communities, the ethnic communities. We simply have to say, Look: LSD has been around for fifty years now, we just celebrated the birthday. It ain't going away. WE are not going away. We are not slack-jawed, dazed, glazed, unemployable psychotic creeps. We are pillars of society. You can't run your computers, your fashion houses, your publishing houses, your damn magazines, you can't do anything in culture without psychedelic people in key positions. And this is the great unspoken truth of American Creativity. So I think it's basically time to just come out of the closet and go, "You know what, I'm stoned, and I'm proud."

François Arago photo

„I have discovered, in fact, that a man, whatever may have been his origin, his education, and his habits, is governed, under certain circumstances, much more by his stomach than by his intelligence and his heart.“

—  François Arago French mathematician, physicist, astronomer and politician 1786 - 1853

"The History of My Youth", p. 55.
Biographies of Distinguished Scientific Men (1859)
Context: I was often humiliated to see men disputing for a piece of bread, just as animals might have done. My feelings on this subject have very much altered since I have been personally exposed to the tortures of hunger. I have discovered, in fact, that a man, whatever may have been his origin, his education, and his habits, is governed, under certain circumstances, much more by his stomach than by his intelligence and his heart.

„Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam egestas wisi a erat. Morbi imperdiet, mauris ac auctor dictum.“